Real cost of Travelling Australia With Kids

On our busy Facebook page, one of our TAWKers posted their actual cost of their Trip and it got so much traction that we thought we'd ensure it was saved for future TAWKers to help plan their own trip.  

(We will add to this page with other families costs as they become available).

14 Week Trip..

Marie and family spent 14 weeks on the road and covered over 22,000km. In the family are 2 adults and 2 kids aged, 13 and 10 years. They travelled in an Isuzu MUX towing an outback Jayco Expanda.

This was their trip...

Money spent in total for the 14 weeks was $16,276.19 for absolutely everything!  This averaged to $1162.59 per week.

Broken down to:

  • Fuel $3921.45 (ave $280.10pw) (most expensive $1.94per litre at kings canyon.) cheapest $1.10! Average Fuel consumption at 12.6L/100km.
  • 2 Services, 4 AT tyres on the car and 2 AT tyres on the caravan. (No flats just needed changing) 1 caravan battery plus charger and other car stuff! ($2385.55)
  • Site fees (caravan parks, national parks camp fees etc) $3067.59 (Ave $219.11pw) we free camped when we could.
  • Fun stuff (boat trips, national parks, meals out, takeaway, coffees, etc.) $4094.30 (ave $298.02 pw)
  • Groceries Incl alcoholic drinks $3151.27 (ave $225.09pw)

So hope this gives you an idea if it's doable or not. They covered a lot more Km's than most in a short period of time so if you do less KM's that's less fuel bringing the average weekly costs down!

We hope this helps you too.

We also have a Finance Trip Tracker to help you to track your own expenses - Grab a copy here.

12 Month Trip

The Great Escape Australia have been using our Finance Tracker to keep a track of their spending and this is where they were at after 1 year on the road.  They often post their spending, so do follow them on Facebook for their updates.


Total accommodation cost: $4170 ($79/wk)

  • Caravan parks: 161 nights
  • Free: 174 nights (66 with family/friends & 44 in staff accommodation)
  • National parks/low cost camps: 60 nights
  • B&B: 1 night for a special occasion

Total fuel cost: $4868 ($93/wk)

  • Approx. 28,000 kms + a few more driving other peoples cars when we flew home to Melbourne for a visit.
  • 3862 litres of fuel in the Triton - Roughly 16L/100km

Groceries: $7663 ($146/wk).

  • We ain't living off noodles.

Phones: $1949 ($37/wk).

  • This includes 2 mobile phone plans on Telstra & Boost and 1 Sat phone which is $15/month.

Car/trailer insurance/rego + ambulance cover + breakdown cover: $2457 ($47/wk).

  • Ambulance victoria cover is $89/yr,
  • RACV total care is $225/yr. Both essentials as far as I'm concerned.

So that's $402/week or $57/day for essentials only. But of course it's not that simple - we want to have some fun too, and unfortunately things can go wrong sometimes as well (or in the case of our car things can go wrong a lot!).


Maintenance & Improvements: $11,134 ($214/wk).
This is the big one. Some of our car expenses include:

  • a new turbo, a new exhaust,
  • 2 new windscreens,
  • 2 new batteries,
  • a few services & 4 new tyres.
  • Plus we've added a few things, and made some modifications to our whole set up along the way. For example: a portaloo + chemicals, shower tent, 12v shower, a stretcher bed for the kid, a second solar panel, and 3 new fans (the fan saga is ongoing. We currently own 4. But that's another story). And let's not forget the gas refills and all the visits to Bunnings/Bursons/Supercheap Auto/Repco etc etc.

Health insurance & health expenses: $6579 ($124/wk). The other big one. Our private health insurance costs $256.50/month. Do we need it? We debate this constantly and always decide yes, so we still have it. Plus in the year we have been away we have had 2 surgeries in the private system which both had out of pocket expenses. But both of these surgeries would have required long waits in the public system and I'm not sure how that would have fitted into our travels. Plus of course there is your usual doctors visits and medication expenses. While living on the road is undoubtedly good for your health it doesn't make you invincible unfortunately.

Alcohol: $1220 ($23/wk).
Surprisingly low.

Entertainment: $1271 ($24/wk).
This includes tourist things + occasional daycare days to keep our child happy when we're stopped in one place for work.

Eating out: $2471 ($47/wk).
Maccas, takeaway coffees, pub meals, & rather a lot of Bunnings sausages.

Presents home: $2456 ($48/wk).
People don't stop having babies or birthdays or getting married just because you're away. And Santa still has to find you. God this one adds up though.

Laundry: $243 ($5/week).

'Other': $4213 ($80/wk).
This includes 2 lots of return flights to Melbourne, 2 new phones (bad luck in that area too!), sunglasses, clothes, replacement underwear after it got stolen off the line... all the other random uncategorized stuff. Which also adds up real quick.

Plus Renee has some expenses related to work (Nursing) like union fees & professional development/courses.

All up we're looking at about $1000/wk. Which is more than we'd hoped but because we work along the way it's been manageable. And on that note..

Fearless and Free Range Camping - 12 month Budget

You might like to head over to the Fearless and Free Range Camping Website to get all the details about their budget.  It is listed monthly here but on their site they go into wonderful detail with budget saving ideas too.  The summary of their spending is below..

Accommodation  $580 per month

This includes 1 night- caravan park, 5 nights low cost camp, 1 night free camp.

Fuel $400 per month

They are slow travellers, so this cost may be more if you go faster. You can grab a copy of our Finance Tracker where you can pop in some figures and get a better idea.

Food $1400 per month

Roughly the same for most families as you would eat at home

Gas - $30 per month

Depends on your set up and obviously how much gas you intend to use for different things.

Health Insurance  $83 per month

You may or may not have this.

Car and Caravan Rego/Insurance/Maintenance  $189 per month

Home or away, you need this.

Phone/Internet  $200 per month

Home or away most need this too.

Splurge $400 per month

Sometimes you just need stuff!


Medication  $75 per month

Not every family may need quite as much - see their explanation on their site for this cost.

Alcohol  $480 per month

Those happy hours can add up.

Subscriptions  $14.95 per month

Netflix.... need I say more! ;)

Schooling  $17.50 per month

Cheaper than many, but again depends what you choose to do.


$4135.45 per month - $954 per week

Again for comprehensive Breakdown, please head over to their article.

If you would like to add your own expenses, then please contact us and we'll add to this page :)

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A great way to recognise other families who are Also Traveling Australia With Kids

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